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Bioshock Infinite: A Narrative Analysis

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Video games are slowly transitioning from childish hobbies that should be done away with as someone gets older to an art form that has taken the US market by storm. Much has changed from the days where the most content a game contained was the movement of vertical, white pixels on a screen. Now, video games have the capacity to create compelling narratives and tell them in a way that engages the participants in ways books do. One such game is Bioshock Infinite. Told in the imaginary floating city of Columbia, it's the tale of a man looking for his daughter. With the words, "bring us the girl and wipe away the debt" on the forefront of his mind, he will do whatever it takes to complete this task. Critically acclaimed for its immersive setting…show more content…
As stated earlier, video games have transitioned into an art form. Art is an extension of the artist and their creativity. Their heart, soul, and being is present in the pieces they create. In the same way, video games are just an extension of those who create them. With this reasoning, we can assume that cultural attitudes will be present in various digital content they provide. Most game developers are males. (This highlights another issue which highlights the lack of gender diversity in certain career paths.) Therefore, the notion that many video games will be layered with attitudes that are geared toward the "stereotypical" male desires is not farfetched. Some of these desires include sexually clad women, minimal clothing, and robust body figures. (Salter & Blodgett, 2012) Now, this perpetuates a real-life narrative that reveals certain hegemonic ideologies concerning masculinity in the US. "According to Wood, masculinity themes are: don't be female; be successful; be aggressive; be sexual; and be self-reliant." (Allen, 2004) The problem is that video games do not create these themes; they are created within a cultural context and applied to different platforms to perpetuate them throughout society. In the world of Infinite, a few of these themes were clearly placed to fuel the male libido in a virtual
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